LAKELAND - The Lakelan Tigers put up six runs against the Fort Myers Miracle bullpen in a 7-4 win at Joker Marchant stadium Sunday afternoon.
Chad Wright put the Tigers on the board with a RBI single in the third. Miracle starter Steven Gruver began the inning by hitting James Robbins with a pitch. Tyler Hanover then pushed a bunt past the mound for a base hit. Drew Longley laid down a sacrifice bunt to put runners at second and third with one out. Wright then stepped up and placed a 1-1 pitch into center field for a single to score Robbins, 1-0.
Lakeland extended the lead to three runs in the sixth on a two-run homer by Connor Harrell. Curt Powell led off with a bloop single into center on Miracle reliever B.J. Hermsen. Harrell then lifted a line drive over the fence in right field to put the Tigers up 3-0.
In the seventh, Lakeland scored four runs on three hits with a pair of two-RBI hits by Powell and Austin Green. Powell had a triple off Miracle reliever Madison Boer to drive in two. Green knocked in two runs on a single through the left side off Tyler Jones,.
The Miracle staged a late rally with four runs in the ninth, all scoring with two outs. Tyler Grimes doubled in two runs down the right field line, Aderling Mejia scored on a wild pitch and Levi Michael drove in a run with an infield single. The rally ended when Lakeland closer Scott Sitz retired Byron Buxton, representing the tying run, on a fly ball to right field. Sitz recorded his second save of the season and fourth of the year.
Gruver (2-6) took the loss despite allowing just one run to score on two hits. Flying Tigers starter Locke St. John earned the win. St. John (2-2) went six scoreless innings and scattered eight hits with no strikeouts.
The Miracle (65-46, 24-18) try to avoid the sweep against Lakeland (56-53, 14-28) at Joker Marchant Stadium in the series finale at 7 p.m. Monday night.
pregame show starts at 6:40 p.m.